If one of your RAID 1 disks fails, the array is still online, because the OTHER RAID disk is still OK. That is the point of RAID 1 - 2 copies of the data appearing as 1 logical drive (say, C drive for simplicity). Your C drive is still there as far as the computer is concerned.
r_manic, not sure what you mean by the RAID array representing "additional reliability problems". If your data is important, you should back it up regardless of RAID, but RAID 1 gives you a bit more, not less, reliability. Recovery mode does not take the drive offline, at least with the hardware arrays I've worked with. It could impact performance some during the rebuild.